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Mouton Cadet Spring Festival returns for 21 st year this weekend

The annual Mouton Cadet Spring Festival returns this weekend with the passholder race on Saturday and the restaurant race and picnic Sunday on Whistler Mountain.

But after 20 years of the Mouton Cadet Spring Festival, there won’t be a Taste of Whistler reception on the Saturday afternoon this year. While the event was always popular it wasn’t always a financial success, given the donations of time, food and wine that Whistler restaurants and Select Wines, importers of Mouton Cadet, made. And the events were designed to raise money for charities.

Instead of the Taste of Whistler reception, this winter Select Wines donated a portion of the sale price of every bottle of Mouton Cadet sold in the region to the local health care centres. Proceeds from the passholder race on Saturday will go to the Whistler-Blackcomb Environmental Fund. Proceeds from the restaurant race on Sunday will go to the Whistle Health Care Centre.

You can still get into the spirit of the Mouton Cadet Spring Festival, and a 21-year tradition, by taking part in the passholder race Saturday and/or the on-mountain picnic Sunday. The picnic starts at 1 p.m.

Taste the Suckfizzle, support the library

International Cellars – whose portfolio includes wines from Australia, British Columbia, California, Chile, France, Italy, Portugal and Spain – will again be the wine sponsor for the 13 th annual Whistler International Wine Festival.

The festival, which takes place Tuesday, May 13 from 7 to 9 p.m. at the Fairmont Chateau Whistler, is a fundraiser for the Whistler Public Library.

Wines which will be featured at the festival are: B.C.’s Gehringer Brothers and Summerhill Estate Winery; Undurraga from Chile; California’s Wente, Ravenswood and Ironstone; Louis Jadot of France; Bersano, Carpineto, Mezzacorona and San Orsola from Italy; Quinta do Noval of Portugal; Spain’s Sequra Viudas, Martinez Bujanda and Vinas del Vero; and five Australian wines: Barramundi, Evans & Tate, Peter Lehmann, Wirra Wirra and the delightfully named Suckfizzle.

The Suckfizzle name came from the writings of 14 th century monk Rabelais who created the character Lord Suckfizzle. Suckfizzle is a small boutique winery in Western Australia’s Margaret River area.

The Whistler International Wine Festival raised approximately $9,000 for the library collection and programming last year. Since its inception the event has raised more than $90,000 for Whistler charities.

Tickets are $30 and available through the library or at the door.

(Veggy) Food for thought

In recent years there have been attempts by various groups across North America to have names that are in today’s PC world considered offensive or disrespectful changed. You may recall an effort a couple of years ago to rename any locations or landmarks with the word "squaw" in them in B.C. There was also an effort to rename Chinaman’s Peak outside Canmore, Alta. a few years ago.

Now this mind-set has moved on to food-related names.

According to the Associated Press, an animal rights group has offered officials in Hamburg, N.Y., $15,000 to change the town’s name to Veggieburg.

"The town’s name conjures up visions of unhealthy patties of ground-up dead cows," said Joe Haptas, spokesman of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), in a letter faxed to Hamburg Supervisor Patrick Hoak.

PETA offered to supply area schools with $15,000 worth of non-meat patties for the name change.

Mr. Hoak immediately rejected the offer.

"With all due respect, I think it’s a delicacy in our community," he said about hamburgers. "We’re proud of our name and proud of our heritage."

The Buffalo suburb, named Hamburg since 1812, claims to be the birth place of the American culinary staple.

In 1996, PETA proposed that the Hudson Valley town of Fishkill change its centuries-old name to Fishsave, since the group believed the name conjured up violent imagery of dead fish.

The town was named by Dutch settlers in the early 1600s. "Kill" is the Dutch word for "stream."

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